Caught in a Snare

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.

Someone is walking along in the jungle or forest and accidentally gets their foot caught in a snare, causing them to spend some time hanging upside down from a tree until they either figure out how to get down or someone comes along who is either a friend or the person who set the snare in the first place.

Alternately, the person triggers a trap that causes a net to ensnare them and they are stuck suspended above the ground that way.

These are the kinds of booby traps that are usually meant to catch animals, but sometimes they are set for the intended purpose of catching humans, which as we all know is The Most Dangerous Game there is.

Happens a lot in pulp-adventure stories involving jungle exploration.

Compare Bear Trap, Unwilling Suspension. A Tribal Carry can be the natural follow-up.

Examples of Caught in a Snare include:

Anime & Manga

  • The net version happened in an episode of Ouran High School Host Club (the one with the test of courage).
  • Team Rocket in the Pokémon anime loves build these and other traps.
  • The little girl in The Noozles, Sandy, gets caught in a snare set by a kiwi she is following in an episode. With her wearing a dress, the shot of her upside down is of head and shoulders only.
  • In episode 4 of Prétear, Himeno gets caught in a snare trap whilst attempting to search the woods for demon larvae, one apparently set by the butler to protect the grounds from intruders.
  • One episode of Full Metal Panic Fumoffu has Sôsuke getting the wrong end of the stick—as usual—during an art project, resulting in him hiding from his classmates and them trying to track him down. One girl is hauled into the air by her ankle in a snare, whilst other members of the class fall foul of various other traps/hazards. The same thing happens in the regular Full Metal Panic! manga.
  • Maburaho has a scene in which Kuriko is dangled upside down by her foot in a magical snare and is rather annoyed at the fact, folding her arms in annoyance without even bothering to hold her skirt up. She was only in female company, but still...
  • Arika in episode 14 of Mai-Otome gets caught in a snare by a bunch of thugs that want to 'remove her ability to be an Otome'.
  • Natsumi in Keroro Gunsou is caught by a snare in the first episode, set by the titular character. She's rescued by her brother a few moments later.
  • He Is My Master has a bit where Izumi is caught in a snare whilst running towards her mother... who knew the trap was there and that her daughter was going to step in it. It's all a setup to put her in a helpless position so that the perverted protagonist can kiss her.

Comic Books

  • Tintin in Cigars of the Pharaoh steps into a snare intended to catch tigers. He might have been able to free himself if he weren't in a straitjacket at the time.
  • Elaine in Lucifer is caught in a snare set by demons whilst dreamwalking. She escapes by reversing gravity.

Comic Strips

  • Calvin and Hobbes: Hobbes is first seen hanging from a snare set by Calvin, eating the tuna-fish sandwich Calvin had left as bait.
  • Lio: The title little boy sets a snare for a girl he has a crush on. The girl does not step in it.
  • A mid-60s Peanuts strip has Charlie Brown at summer camp attempting to master the rope climbing obstacle. He does so with such verve and reckless abandon that his foot gets tangled up in the rope and he ends up hanging upside down for his efforts.

Films -- Animation

  • Heavy Metal. Taarna is caught in a net trap while flying.
  • On Brother Bear, Kenai gets caught in one and is rescued by Koda, much to his embarrassment.

Films -- Live-Action

  • The net version happened in Return of the Jedi, though it's Chewie who pulls the meat from the tree despite being told not to which triggers the trap.
  • Predator. The team sets up a net trap to catch the title monster. It works, but not for long—the Predator cuts himself free in seconds.
  • Friday the 13 th Part II. One of the camp counselors is caught in a snare and killed by Jason while hanging upside down.
  • Time Bandits. The title group is caught and left hanging in snares set by Robin Hood.
  • The tree-snare variant of this happens to Beck, the main character of The Rundown, much to the amusement of Travis, who he's been assigned to take back to Chicago:

Travis: Welcome to the jungle, tough guy!

  • Happens to Will Turner early in the second Pirates of the Caribbean movie.
  • Arch is caught in a snare in April Fools' Day, right next to a poisonous snake.
  • Zig-zagged in the 1976 movie Nickelodeon, where Jane Hitchcock's character gets her foot tangled up in a hot air balloon's tow rope, causing her to dangle upside down when the balloon takes off.
  • Two characters in Severance are snagged by snares during the course of this black comedy movie.
  • The cute-as-a-button Irish girl in British horror film Wilderness is caught by a snare whilst fleeing through the woods. She suffers a rather gruesome, physics-defying death shortly afterwards.
  • In the low-budget fantasy skin-flick Amazons, the two heroines are caught in snares set by slavers. One manages to free herself, but the other is captured.
  • Towards the end of Fear Island one of the girls is snared as she runs in fear through the trees.
  • Happens to one of the Hillbillies in Tucker and Dale vs. Evil.


  • In Watership Down Bigwig gets caught in a snare.
  • In Warrior Cats: Battles Of The Clans, an ancient WindClan warrior named Rabbittail is stuck in a snare.

Live-Action TV

  • This happens a lot on Lost. Rousseau has set these kinds of traps all over the island in the hopes of catching the Others.
    • In season one Sayid gets caught in a snare, which is how he first meets Rousseau, who is less than friendly towards him.
    • Kate and Jack get caught in a net together at one point, causing some UST as they are stuck hanging in an awkward position while trying to figure out how to get down.
    • In season two, a man who calls himself "Henry", who is actually Ben gets caught in one of Rousseau's nets, and she suspects him of being an Other.
  • Giles Wemmbley-Hogg Goes Off: Giles Wemmbley-Hogg gets stuck in a snare while wandering the jungle in Bolivia, and spends the end of the episode suspended upside-down eating from a bag.
  • In the Doctor Who serial Survival, Ace and her friends set a trap to catch a Catgirl. Unfortunately, the next person to come that way is the Doctor.
  • A black-and-white episode of Lassie has young Timmy caught in a snare intended for a loose wildcat who sees him hanging like grapes on a bough. Lassie arrives to kick the wildcat's tuchus.
  • Happens in Xena: Warrior Princess, episode "Dangerous Prey", where one character is caught by both her ankles in a snare set to catch humans.

Tabletop Games

Video Games

  • In Space Quest II, Roger accidentally trips a hunter's snare, and is stuck there until the hunter who set it eventually comes and takes him down, intending to bring him back to his lair as lunch.
  • The title character in Pajama Sam gets snagged by a snare whilst in the forest. He then has a conversation with talking trees.
  • In Timesplitters Future Perfect the red-hot Jo-Beth Casey is seperated from the PC hero Cortez and is later found dangling by her ankle in a snare apparently set for zombies. You then have to protect her whilst she attempts to free herself. She even lampshades the most common problem for girls caught in a snare: "If I'd known this was going to happen, I'd have worn pants." Not that her tartan miniskirt leaves much hidden, mind...

Web Comics

  • This happened at some point in Schlock Mercenary when the Toughs land on a planet to discover in is home to a sentient stone-age race.

Western Animation

  • King of the Hill: Hank and Boomhaur got snared, and Bill tripped the wire for one but was too fat for the tree to pull him up. He removed the foot-lasso and ran to get help but fell into a drop pit (if that's what they're called).
  • In an episode of Ed, Edd 'n' Eddy, Johnny gets his head stuck in tree simply due to its massive size and a forked branch. Initially the title heroes attempt to save him for rescue payment, but soon become distracted by a more profitable scam. He is stuck offscreen until the end of the episode when he frees himself in order to exact revenge—and now the tree fork his head was stuck in represents horns.
  • One Looney Tunes short has Foghorn Leghorn seeing Henery building a snare trap and points out how a smart chicken like him would just jump over it... which is just was Henery wanted, as the spot Foghorn lands is where the trap door was.
  • Seen on the Tom and Jerry short Good Mousekeeping. Tom gets caught on it when Jerry switches the cheese used as bait for a bowl of cream.
  • On The Simpsons, Homer and Bart are lost in the woods and try to catch a rabbit this way. The trap just flings it up in the air.
  • Jonny Quest episode "Treasure of the Temple". While the Quest team is traveling to the temple, a native cuts a line and one of the bearers is hauled into the air by the ankle.
  • Taz-Mania: Bull Gator & Axl get trapped in a snare they set for Taz; then Taz trips another nearby snare on purpose just so he can get close enough to ensue some hilarity.
  • Happens several times on Scooby Doo Mystery Inc, with Fred the guy responsible for them.
  • In the animated Punky Brewster episode "Punky to the Rescue", Margaux has one foot in a snare posing as bait for a so-called swamp monster, but in a case of animator's discretion she is shown standing upright with her snared foot raised and not hanging upside down because she's wearing a dress.
  • In some instances, getting hung upside down in any tether isn't relegated to just snares but usually occur either by accident or as part of a story device. The 1951 Mighty Mouse cartoon Sunny Italy opens with such a story device, showing Pearl Pureheart dangling by one foot from the Leaning Tower of Pisa at the behest of the villain Oil Can Harry.
  • In Wakfu season 1 episode 5, Evangelyne and Amalia gets caught in a net... while they are setting it up themselves to defend the village.
  • Happened fairly regularly in the old Sylvanian Families syndicated cartoon. Usually to the villain, Packbat, stumbling into one of his own 'silly-vanian traps'.